Tuesday, 2 July 2019

Questions (296)

Robert Troy


296. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Education and Skills the assistance he is providing to a school (details supplied) in obtaining a new premises that can accommodate enrolment numbers for September 2019; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28256/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

My Department does not have any remit for the provision of accommodation for the school referred to by the Deputy. However, it is open to the school in question to explore with local schools in the area the possibility of using their buildings outside of school hours.

As the Deputy may be aware my Department has a general policy of encouraging the use of school facilities by community and other groups where this is possible and following consultation with the relevant school authorities, in October 2017 published Guidelines on the use of School Buildings outside of School Hours These guidelines can be viewed on my Department's website at this link: https://www.education.ie/en/Publications/Policy-Reports/guidelines-on-the-use-of-school-buildings-outside-of-school-hours.pdf

The purpose of these guidelines is to provide guidance for schools in relation to the use of school buildings outside of school hours and for those schools who are considering putting such arrangements in place.

The management of school premises at local level is a matter for the relevant school authorities. Any decision to make school premises available ultimately lies with the relevant Trustees/Property owners following a recommendation from the school authorities. However, as schools are often the centre of sustainable communities there can be mutual benefits in building links with the local community. It is recognised that schools play an important role in their wider communities and many schools make their facilities available outside of school hours for a variety of different uses and users.